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  1. #1
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    Apr 2011
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    Default Do Store Detectives Have to Read You Your Rights

    My question involves civil rights in the State of: North Carolina

    I'm wanting to know the powers of store detectives and whether or not they need to read me rights, and handcuff me before seeing any physical evidence or me admitting to anything?
    I'm 18 was handcuffed in the middle of Target yesterday and placed under arrest.

    -Not once were my rights read to me by the secret shopper when he asked me questions while handcuffed in the store holding room
    -The investigator had no witness present when he placed me in cuffs
    -The investigator never asked if I had any store merchandise on me before he cuffed me initially
    -The investigator never showed me any sort of identification when he grabbed me to prove he was who he said (I assumed when he grabbed me he wasn't a kidnapper posing as security), but what if I was wrong??
    -The investigator search my pockets without asking (I only remember him saying do you have anything in your pockets) and I said yeah I don't remember specifying anything. The search was started and the he stopped after removing evidence from me and said "I need to grab a witness", and then began the search again.
    -Target falsely accused me of count of shoplifting and concealment when I was no where near the exit or the front of the store. I simply placed them in my pockets because I did not want to hold them, there were 51 packs of seeds, I was only wearing basketball shorts and already has seeds from another store in my possession, I removed them several times which will be seen on camera only to place them back in my pockets. My friends were the ones paying as I did not have my wallet on me at the time.
    -I had seeds from another store of a different brand not carried by Target that were taken from me and not returned, isn't that technically my property, they have no right to take what is rightfully mine.
    -I was asked what I was doing with them in the back, I said I was getting them because i did not have my wallet. At the time I was under the impression that maybe I was stealing because I was unaware of the law in North Carolina, I'm from Maryland here for college. I found out later that it was technically just concealment.
    -Should I have been read rights at any time. Can you hold somebody who never stole and keep them cuffed and ask questions? I was never told you are free to leave at any time or anything like that, just held against my will and accused.
    -The police officers never asked any questions at the station and got me in and right back out so I assume they didn't need to read me rights.

    Do I have any case here, did the investigator treat me unjustly, can anyone give me insight as to the rights of security officers and whether the investigator had the right to do the things that were listed?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    38,867

    Default Re: Powers Store Detectives, Were My Rights Violated

    14-72.1. Concealment of merchandise in mercantile establishments.

    (a)Whoever, without authority, willfully conceals the goods or merchandise of any store, not theretofore purchased by such person, while still upon the premises of such store, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be punished as provided in subsection (e). Such goods or merchandise found concealed upon or about the person and which have not theretofore been purchased by such person shall be prima facie evidence of a willful concealment.

    (b) Repealed by Session Laws 1985 (Regular Session, 1986), c. 841, s. 2.

    (c) A merchant, or the merchant's agent or employee, or a peace officer who detains or causes the arrest of any person shall not be held civilly liable for detention, malicious prosecution, false imprisonment, or false arrest of the person detained or arrested, where such detention is upon the premises of the store or in a reasonable proximity thereto, is in a reasonable manner for a reasonable length of time, and, if in detaining or in causing the arrest of such person, the merchant, or the merchant's agent or employee, or the peace officer had at the time of the detention or arrest probable cause to believe that the person committed the offense created by this section. If the person being detained by the merchant, or the merchant's agent or employee, is a minor under the age of 18 years, the merchant or the merchant's agent or employee, shall call or notify, or make a reasonable effort to call or notify the parent or guardian of the minor, during the period of detention. A merchant, or the merchant's agent or employee, who makes a reasonable effort to call or notify the parent or guardian of the minor shall not be held civilly liable for failing to notify the parent or guardian of the minor.

    (d) Whoever, without authority, willfully transfers any price tag from goods or merchandise to other goods or merchandise having a higher selling price or marks said goods at a lower price or substitutes or superimposes thereon a false price tag and then presents said goods or merchandise for purchase shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be punished as provided in subsection (e).

    Nothing herein shall be construed to provide that the mere possession of goods or the production by shoppers of improperly priced merchandise for checkout shall constitute prima facie evidence of guilt.

    (d1)Notwithstanding subsection (e) of this section, any person who violates subsection (a) of this section by using a lead-lined or aluminum-lined bag, a lead-lined or aluminum-lined article of clothing, or a similar device to prevent the activation of any antishoplifting or inventory control device is guilty of a Class H felony.

    (e) Punishment. - For a first conviction under subsection (a) or (d), or for a subsequent conviction for which the punishment is not specified by this subsection, the defendant shall be guilty of a Class 3 misdemeanor. The term of imprisonment may be suspended only on condition that the defendant perform community service for a term of at least 24 hours. For a second offense committed within three years after the date the defendant was convicted of an offense under this section, the defendant shall be guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor. The term of imprisonment may be suspended only on condition that the defendant be imprisoned for a term of at least 72 hours as a condition of special probation, perform community service for a term of at least 72 hours, or both. For a third or subsequent offense committed within five years after the date the defendant was convicted of two other offenses under this section, the defendant shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. The term of imprisonment may be suspended only if a condition of special probation is imposed to require the defendant to serve a term of imprisonment of at least 11 days. However, if the sentencing judge finds that the defendant is unable, by reason of mental or physical infirmity, to perform the service required under this section, and the reasons for such findings are set forth in the judgment, the judge may pronounce such other sentence as the judge finds appropriate.
    I think you need to worry more about defending yourself in court and less about the legal actions taken by the store security. You have clearly stated you are guilty of concealment. I suggest your only defense is proving there was no intent. Of course all of your friends that were with you have already spoken to the police that day and told them they were paying for the merchandise you concealed in your pockets, right?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
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    6

    Default Re: Powers Store Detectives, Were My Rights Violated

    No the security guard ripped me away from my friends and didn't stop them or even bother to. He gave them no chance and they left back for the dorm to grab my wallet and cell phone. The police never got a chance for them to make a statement neither did the store. I'm talking to a lawyer on monday and i have a defense to support the fact that i wasn't intentionally concealing.

  4. #4
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    Mar 2007
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    9,096

    Default Re: Powers Store Detectives, Were My Rights Violated

    Quote Quoting Gaidol10
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    No the security guard ripped me away from my friends and didn't stop them or even bother to. He gave them no chance and they left back for the dorm to grab my wallet and cell phone. The police never got a chance for them to make a statement neither did the store. I'm talking to a lawyer on monday and i have a defense to support the fact that i wasn't intentionally concealing.
    You weren't intentionally concealing?

    You accidentally put the stuff in your pocket?

    OH, what you mean is that you WERE concealing but NOT to steal anything.

    You see, loss prevention and the judge hear this so often that they won't believe you. Even if true, you won't be believed.

  5. #5
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    Jan 2006
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    Default Re: Powers Store Detectives, Were My Rights Violated

    Quote Quoting Gaidol10
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    No the security guard ripped me away from my friends and didn't stop them or even bother to. He gave them no chance and they left back for the dorm to grab my wallet and cell phone. The police never got a chance for them to make a statement neither did the store. I'm talking to a lawyer on monday and i have a defense to support the fact that i wasn't intentionally concealing.
    yes, all of your friends had to run and get your wallet. None of them could stick around and wait for you. Of course they called the police later and told them they ran away when you got nabbed and it took all of them to get your wallet, right?

    Yes, you were intentionally concealing. You put them in your pocket. That is you intentionally concealing them.

  6. #6
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    Apr 2011
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    Default Re: Powers Store Detectives, Were My Rights Violated

    No I didn't have them call or anything, I didn't know at the time that that would matter, does it matter? can they call now? who should they contact? and they didn't stay because they didn't know what was going on until i was already in the back room. I don't care about the concealment i figure the judge won't believe me, but none of them knew what to do either which is why they left to get my stuff. they all went because we took one car and 2 of them got dropped off and two came back. should i call and have them make a statement and if so who do we call, target, police department. I was never told one time that i could pay for the merchandise and not be charged. they didn't even try to help me out at all. they just accused me. they asked what i was doing with them and i told them i was trying to steal them because i didn't have my wallet because i had no idea whether it was stealing or not and assumed they would say that i was anyway. i don't remember the full extent of what i told them but i probably self incriminated myself when i didn't even mean to.

  7. #7
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    Mar 2007
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    Default Re: Powers Store Detectives, Were My Rights Violated

    Quote Quoting Gaidol10
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    No I didn't have them call or anything, I didn't know at the time that that would matter, does it matter? can they call now? who should they contact? and they didn't stay because they didn't know what was going on until i was already in the back room. I don't care about the concealment i figure the judge won't believe me, but none of them knew what to do either which is why they left to get my stuff. they all went because we took one car and 2 of them got dropped off and two came back. should i call and have them make a statement and if so who do we call, target, police department.
    Wow. that was very tough to read.

    Your friends shouldn't call anyone. What, exactly, would they say? "Honest, he was going to buy the stuff that was hidden in his pocket." Waste of everyone's time.

    I was never told one time that i could pay for the merchandise and not be charged.
    That's because paying for the merchandise doesn't make the crime go away. A bank robber that returns the money still robbed the bank.

    they didn't even try to help me out at all.
    You were in the act of STEALING from them. Why would they help you?

    they just accused me. they asked what i was doing with them and i told them i was trying to steal them because i didn't have my wallet because i had no idea whether it was stealing or not and assumed they would say that i was anyway. i don't remember the full extent of what i told them but i probably self incriminated myself when i didn't even mean to.
    Wait. Now you are saying you WERE going to steal the merchandise because you forgot your wallet?

    And you admitted to it?

    Okay.. now everything makes much more sense. Get an attorney.

  8. #8
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    Jun 2006
    Location
    Massachusetts
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    Default Re: Powers Store Detectives, Were My Rights Violated

    Contrary to what you see on TV, there is no requirement that your rights be read to you at the time of the arrest. And so that you know, even if it is determined that your rights should have been read to you sooner than they were, the recourse is suppression of any statement you may have made, NOT voiding the whole arrest and setting you loose.

  9. #9
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    Aug 2007
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    Default Re: Powers Store Detectives, Were My Rights Violated

    Quote Quoting Gaidol10
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    My question involves civil rights in the State of: North Carolina

    I'm wanting to know the powers of store detectives and whether or not they need to read me rights, and handcuff me before seeing any physical evidence or me admitting to anything?
    51 packs of seeds? I would say concealment of that amount would provide enough probable cause to detain you according to the law jk posted.

    The law seems to not mention if a store agent can search you, so in that respect the "touching of the person" appears to be legal. I do know in my state, the shoplifter can not be searched by the store agent, only by police.

    Was handcuffing you legal? I can't answer that. Unless the law specifically does not permit it unless a fight ensues, etc., again that "touching of the person" is probably permitted. A lawyer needs to review the facts.

    I have never heard of such a large amount of product being carried around by means other then a cart or mini basket. That #, 51, in and of itself, is quite compelling. The defense you offer is extremely weak.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Powers Store Detectives, Were My Rights Violated

    they asked what i was doing with them and i told them i was trying to steal them because i didn't have my wallet because i had no idea whether it was stealing or not and assumed they would say that i was anyway
    so, you admitted to stealing the seeds because you figured that is what they thought you were doing when they apprehended you.

    Case closed.


    anyway; my point about your friends is; since you want to make up stories to try to get out of this, I was simply telling you this one makes no sense.

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